By Pam Fitzpatrick
What a wonderful weekend just passed: Black Friday, then Small Business Saturday with the arrival of Santa Claus in Old Town and the uplifting Spark of Love Toy Drive. Who says Amazon has taken over the world? Yes, online shopping was at an all-time high, but the malls didn’t suffer and neither did the small businesses of Old Town Monrovia. We can’t thank our Old Town guests enough for the support of their ma and pa shops and the recognition that we serve the entire community.
Last night we had a dinner merchant meeting and the subject of “who patronizes Old Town” came up. The answer was simple: we’re not just a millennial hot spot – we’ve got something for everyone. The quandary is, and always has been, how to market to that broad demographic? Once again, we came to the same conclusion: social media, print and word of mouth. I hope everyone noticed our full-page ad in last weekend’s paper, listing all of the events to come during the month of December. That same ad will appear again in this paper and in the Pasadena Star News, so if you didn’t see it, you have another chance. We also have our traditional North Poles with Holiday Flyers and soon the shops will also have flyers.
Speaking of social media, I’ve been reading comments lately on FB about the need for quiet, date-night type restaurants, and some folks were saying they had been forced to go to Pasadena to avoid the TV/loud music in our bars and grills. But we have all types of eateries in town that maybe folks don’t know about. Each week I’m going to highlight one restaurant with the hopes you’ll give it a try. Let’s start with Bella Sera in the 400 block: true, when the restaurant is packed, the noise level goes up a bit, but week nights are quiet, and the food is delicious. Their menu has a wide variety of appetizers (including bacon-wrapped dates!) and the choice of entries goes from traditional Italian to delicious short ribs, salmon and chicken dishes. And – they deliver if you want really quiet!
I’m now convinced we have a new restaurant coming to town. Remember the spot on the southwest corner of Lime which was most recently Craft Hill? You may know it as the Sow House, or before that, Café Opera; anyway, that spot is being looked at by Basin 141, a restaurant currently in Montrose. Not sure if it’s another location for them, or if they are moving. It will be really nice to have that large, visible space occupied again!
Coming up soon: the first Santa Breakfast at Jake’s Roadhouse (9 a.m., Saturday Dec. 2). Also on Saturday we have our very own Champagne Singers caroling in Old Town from 1 – 3 p.m., and Citrus College singers in the evening from 6 – 8 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 7 is the Holiday Parade (7 p.m.) and the Tree Lighting (Library Park 6 p.m.). See you in Old Town!